dear mom and dad

Dear mom and dad,

I debated on whether or not I should write to you in one post or do each of you individually. And the more I thought about it, the more I realized that, though you have taught me so much as individuals, you have taught me so much more as a team.

Your marriage is not simply healthy; it is also full, it is thriving, it is beautiful.. Through the two of you I have learned what a true marriage should be like. I have seen what I want my husband to be like and how a godly wife should be. It is something I take for granted far too often and I pray I will fully realize what a blessing it is.

And now, I'll address you individually.

Dear mom,

Wow. I told myself I wouldn't cry and here I am, tears streaming down my face.

You are incredible.

Never have I seen such selfless love than I have in you. You are so close to God that it bursts out of you, like waters that cannot be enclosed by a dam.

You have instilled in me the beauty of having time alone with God. Every single morning that I wake up (way after you... and I'm an early riser so it just shows how much of a Proverbs 31 woman you are*) I see the leftovers of your time with Him---your open Bible worn from plenty of use, your journal, your prayer binder. You have been leaving a legacy that even you probably weren't aware of. While you were pursuing your Creator you were creating a longing in me to pursue the same One.

Oh, and your prayers. You pray all the time. You are one of those people that says, "I'll pray for you" to a friend or co-worker, and you actually do it! I remember going through your prayer requests plenty of times and seeing longings I had told you about in casual conversation and you had truly listened and acted on them by praying in my behalf. That's not normal; it's proof of a woman following the One.

What's more, I have never felt rejected by you. I hear so many friends saying how their moms will ridicule them and speak sarcasm into their vulnerable heart, but you have never spoken a hateful word to me. Every single time I come to you saying I need to talk, you stop what you are doing and give me full attention. You have spooled me and I am eternally grateful.

You make me want to be like you. You make me want to be a true woman like you. A woman who prioritizes family. Who doesn't mess around with gossip and hurting others. A woman who prays continusly and with fervor. A wife who loves, respects and honors her husband. A mom who disciplines and loves. A woman after God's own heart.

You make me so happy to be called your daughter every single day.

Dear daddy,

Oh man, where do I begin?

Needless to say, I am a daddy's girl. You are my favorite man on the planet and I love hanging out with you.

You have protected me and my heart with a passion. You have shown that men are one of the ways God shows his fierce love. The kind of love that looks into the eyes of those who threaten their beloveds and say, "Back down. I am here and I will defeat you." You have shown this in obvious forms of protections. Like the time I was by myself and felt vulnerable to a stranger and you dropped all of your work to drive over to where I was and just be with me; a symbol of the protection you give.

You've also protected me in ways that aren't so obvious. Like how you continually tell me I'm beautiful, protecting me from the voices on the TV and in my head that say I'm not. Like how you point out my strong points, even when I feel like their my weak ones. Like how you have portrayed what a true man is, protecting me from falling too quickly for a man who is not worth my time. Like how you have worked hard, day in and day out, to provide for your family and simply not be lazy. You have protected me from the men who would rather stay home and watch TV then help and provide for their family.

Every time I think about what I want in a husband, I think of a spiritual leader. Why? Because you have been this to your wife and family. You don't give long speeches or confusing prayers, you simply live a life that honors God, your wife, and your family. Like how you are always reading your Bible. Like how you admit prayer is hard for you, so you work all the harder to be one who is always in an attitude of prayer (in fact, when you once mentioned to me in passing that it's easier for you to read the Word than it is to pray, I was in shock because I feel like I always see you with your prayer book going over and over the list you have made and the needs you are praying for). You have been a spiritual leader in the way you do business. You are the most fair and just man I know. You don't go for the extra money just because you can by trickery and manipulation. You go for the money you earn fairly. That's incredible.

You know what's also incredible? How intelligent you are. You are the best debater I have ever met. And it's not because you manipulate or use fancy language. It's because you know your stuff and you can explain it in a way that makes sense. I hope you realize this and use it. I hope you use this gift to open the eyes of people who have not yet truly seen.

And I love, love, love how ridiculously funny you can be. I love your jokes, your stories, and your humor. You make our family laugh when it'd be easier to cry or get mad. You are always up for the practical joke and always ready to have fun. And we've had a lot of fun through the years camping, hiking, canoeing, traveling, and laughing.

I'm so blessed to have you.

And finally, mom and dad, let me just say this: I will always be your baby. I will always be your little girl. I will never get too old to call you and ask you for money ;) I am so happy that you guys will be the grandparents to my children. I'm so happy that you will be the ones who will give my future husband the blessing to marry me. I am so blessed to have parents that truly care about me and my future and my God calling. I love you.


 **"First thing in the morning, she dresses for work, rolls up her sleeves, eager to get started. She senses the worth of her work, is in no hurry to call it quits for the day."